Businesses in Crewe have been awarded cash grants by Cheshire East Council to
encourage people to cycle and walk to work or to car share with colleagues.
Eight local employers, including Bentley Motors and South Cheshire College, will share more than £30,000 as part of a council effort to cut congestion on the roads, ease car parking pressure and encourage more active forms of travel.
Firms will use the funding for a range of improvements – including shower and changing facilities for cyclists, lockers or secure shelters for bike storage.
South Cheshire College plans to use more than £4,000 to encourage staff and students to make the shift to walking or cycling. Another grant recipient, Alliance Disposables, will use the cash to set up a car sharing scheme for staff.
The grants have been awarded by Travel Cheshire, a Cheshire East Council scheme funded by the Department of Transport, which was set up last year to promote walking, cycling and other forms of ‘active travel’.
Other local employers to benefit include Joseph Heler Cheese Ltd, Jones Sheridan
Financial Consulting Ltd, Leighton Hospital, The Country Group and Assurant.
Last month, cash grants were awarded to two local community organisations, Christian Concern and Community Recycle Cycles, to help promote cycling in the town and boost skills and training locally.
The grants scheme is funded by the Department of Transport’s Sustainable Travel
Transition Year (STTY) initiative, which aims to widen access to skills, training and
employment opportunities by promoting walking, cycling and public transport use.
The project has also seen the creation of a new website – travelcheshire.co.uk – to help widen people’s travel options and encourage more active forms of transport.
Councillor David Brown, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for highways and
Infrastructure, said: “Local businesses in Crewe are keen to find ways to reduce car use – either for their employees or customers and we hope these grants will go some way to helping them to achieve that aim.
“By making it easier for staff to cycle or walk to work, or to encourage car sharing, it’s a win-win. Firms can reduce traffic around their site, making it easier for customers or
deliveries to get through, and this can help ease pressure on parking space and reduce pollution.
“But by encouraging staff to get on their bikes or walk to work there are other benefits. Staff get into work less stressed, and by getting some exercise and fresh air it sets you up for the working day ahead.
“It can also help staff to save money and has been shown to improve productivity and
recruitment and retention rates, as well as employee health and well being.”
Last week Cheshire East Council launched a 10-year cycle strategy which aims to double the number of people cycling in the borough. The plan will deliver a high quality cycle
network of key routes to connect residents and visitors to jobs, skills, schools services and leisure opportunities.